The Wolverine

January 2013

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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  men's basketball Wolverines Are Off To One   Of Their Best Starts Ever W ith the Wolverines' 81-66 win over West Virginia Dec. 15 in the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., they improved their pristine record to 11-0. While the college basketball season is long and grueling — especially with a brutal Big Ten schedule and March Madness looming in the nottoo-distant future — Michigan's fast start already puts the 2012-13 season in some pretty rarified air. The Wolverines have started the year 11-0 or better just twice previously in program history — and in both instances, they wound up hanging a championship banner from the rafters. In 1988-89, the Wolverines began the season 11-0. In those 11 wins, Michigan completely dominated its opponents, outscoring them by an average of 33.3 points per game, including a 125-75 dismantling of Northern Michigan. On offense, Michigan averaged 100.5 points per game. The Wolverines' best win of the stretch came in the third game of the season, a 91-80 win over then-No. 4 Oklahoma in the Maui Classic championship game. Michigan dropped its 12th game of the year, a surprising 70-66 loss to Alaska-Anchorage in the Utah Basketball Classic in Salt Lake City. Although the Seawolves finished 21-9 that season, it was a major upset. But the Wolverines bounced back, finishing the regular season 24-7 and in third place in the Big Ten. That's when the real magic started, though. After head coach Bill Frieder announced his intentions to take the Arizona State job, interim coach Steve Fisher took over for the postseason and led the team through the rigorous NCAA Tournament. After losing both regular-season games against powerhouse Illinois, the Wolverines upset the Fighting Illini 83-81 in the Final Four and went on to beat Seton Hall 80-79 in overtime of the national championship game. 38  the wolverine    January 2013 Ten title with an end-of-the-year 8052 dismantling of No. 16 Indiana. Although Michigan didn't find success in the NCAA Tournament — losing 72-69 to Iowa State in the second round — it still earned the conference crown. This season, Michigan has outscored its first 11 opponents by an average of 20.6 points per game. The Wolverines play Eastern Michigan Dec. 20, Central Michigan Dec. 29, at Northwestern Jan. 3, Iowa Jan. 6, Nebraska Jan. 9 and at No. 4 Ohio State Jan. 13. If they complete that stretch of the schedule with a stillunblemished record, they will be 170, which would constitute the best start in program history. 2012-13 Michigan Men's Basketball Schedule Date Opponent Time Nov. 1Northern Michigan (ex.)W, 83-47 Nov. 5 Saginaw Valley State (ex.)W, 76-48 Nov. 9 Slippery RockW, 100-62 NIT Season Tip-Off Nov. 12 IUPUI (1)W, 91-54 Nov. 13 Cleveland State (1)W, 77-47 Nov. 21Pittsburgh (2)W, 67-62 Nov. 23 Kansas State (2)W, 71-57 Big Ten/ACC Challenge Nov. 27North Carolina State (3) W, 79-72 Head coach John Beilein guided the Wolverines to an 11-0 start to the season, a mark U-M has reached only twice before in program history. photo by lon horwedel And in 1985-86, the Wolverines also started off strong. After winning its first Big Ten championship since 1978 the previous year, Michigan stormed into the 1985-86 season, ripping off 16 straight wins to begin the year. The Wolverines notched a marquee win over No. 2 Georgia Tech in the Tipoff Classic, beating the Yellow Jackets 49-44 and just kept on winning, including Big Ten games over No. 15 Indiana, No. 18 Illinois and No. 20 Purdue. During the streak, Michigan outscored its opponents by an average of 15.8 points per game. The Wolverines finished the regular season 27-4 and clinched the Big Dec. 1 at Bradley W, 74-66 Dec. 4Western Michigan W, 73-41 Dec. 8 Arkansas W, 80-67 Dec. 11Binghamton W, 67-39 Dec. 15 vs. West Virginia (4) W, 81-66 Dec. 20Eastern Michigan 8:30 p.m. Dec. 29 Central Michigan 7 p.m. Jan. 3 at Northwestern 7 p.m. Jan. 6 IowaNoon Jan. 9Nebraska 7 p.m. Jan. 13 at Ohio State 1:30/4:30 p.m. Jan. 17 at Minnesota 7 p.m. Jan. 24Purdue 8 p.m. Jan. 27 at Illinois 6 p.m. Jan. 30Northwestern 6:30 p.m. Feb. 2 at Indiana 9 p.m. Feb. 5Ohio State 9 p.m. Feb. 9 at WisconsinNoon Feb. 12 at Michigan State 9 p.m. Feb. 17Penn StateNoon Feb. 24 Illinois 1/4/6 p.m. Feb. 27 at Penn State 6:30 p.m. March 2 Michigan State 5:15 p.m. or March 3 Michigan State 1/4 p.m. March 6 at Purdue 7 p.m. March 10Indiana 1/4/6 p.m. March 14-17 Big Ten Tournament Schedule Legend: (1) NIT Season Tip-Off Michigan Regional, Ann Arbor, Mich. (Crisler Center); (2) NIT Season Tip-Off Championship, Manhattan, N.Y. (Madison Square Garden); (3) Big Ten/ACC Challenge presented by Dick's Sporting Goods, Ann Arbor, Mich. (Crisler Center); (4) Brooklyn Winter Hoops Festival, Brooklyn, N.Y. (Barclays Center) — first game: Fordham vs. Princeton

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